Rotary International President R. Ravindran to visit Zimbabwe in March 2016

It is a great pleasure and privilege that we announce that the Rotary International President Ravi Ravindran (Sri -Lanka), with his wife Mrs Vanathy Ravindran will be visiting Zimbabwe from 5 to 7 March, 2016. He will be accompanied by Rotary International Director Safak Alpay (Turkey) and his wife Mrs Deniz Alpay, District 9210 Governor, Dean  Lungu (Malawi) and his wife Mrs Ulemu Lungu.

This is particularly elating considering that Rotary is represented in more than 160 countries across the globe and that a Rotary International President’s term of office is only one year. ZIMBABWE benefits from this visit in numerous ways among others this visit puts Zimbabwe on the Global Map as the country gets positive International media attention. His visit will be shared with approximately 1,200 000 Rotary Members across the Globe.

Increased Humanitarian Projects and support through the Rotary Foundation which has been funding projects through Rotary clubs in Zimbabwe.

The Rotary International President will be engaging with Head of State and senior Government leaders to discuss opportunities for advancement of peace, poverty alleviation and development of local communities in the Region. Zimbabwe is one of only 4 countries on the continent that he will be visiting in his one year term.

The theme for this Rotary year is ‘Be a Gift to the World’.

Rotary (founded in 1905) was instrumental in the drafting of the UN Charter which led to the founding of the United Nations in 1945 and is recognised for its contribution to peace and poverty alleviation through a specially set aside annual Rotary Day at the United Nations every November. In November 2015, a Zimbabwean  member of a Rotary Club (Stella Dongo), made history by being among Six Women worldwide and only one in Africa, to be named Global Women of Action at the United Nations.

The largest Rotary project internationally is the Polio Eradication Global Campaign which has seen Polio being eradicated in over 200 countries with the remaining pockets of Polio being in the two conflict zones of Afghanistan and Pakistan. Rotary working with supporting partners, who include, WHO, US Centre Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, UNICEF, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, has to date spent over US$800 million on this initiative. It is with great joy that Africa was declared polio free in October 2015 by the World Health Organisation with the final battle against polio having been in Nigeria.

In this Rotary District, 9210, comprising Malawi, northern Mozambique, Zambia and Zimbabwe, Rotary has invested well over US$20 million in the last three years in the following areas of focus:
  1. Fighting Disease
  2. Providing Clean Water and Sanitation
  3. Maternal Health Care
  4. Supporting Education
  5. Growing Local Economies
Zimbabwe in particular, there are over 100 (one hundred) projects at any given time being undertaken by the 30 Rotary Clubs across the country.  Key amongst the projects that have been implemented over the years:

A Community Empowerment Project worth US$330 000 where more than 6 000 women and youth have been trained in basic business and computer skills benefiting more than 250 000 people in Harare’s high density suburbs of Budiriro, Crowborough North, Kambuzuma, Rugare and Mufakose.
Provision of a clinic, construction of a dam and the respective irrigation equipment to Mother of Peace: an orphanage in Mutoko.
Citing and drilling of numerous boreholes to provide clean water throughout the country with a particular emphasis on the relatively dry areas of Matebeleland South.

Rotary Clubs have been involved in a number of Medical Missions nationwide where thousands have accessed medical facilities. These include Eyes for Africa (with Dr Solomon Guramatunhu) cataract removal campaigns and operations, Cleft Lip Operations, Doctors from other countries performing correctional surgery every year and more recently, a medical Mission Project in Mutare and Nyanga where a team of doctors flew in from India, treated and operated on over 1000 people with various medical conditions at no cost to the patients while imparting modern technological practices to local doctors.
The Rotary International President will be visiting the Community Empowerment Project in Mufakose on the 5th of March during his historic visit to Zimbabwe, details to follow.

He will address the Youth on the 6th of March (Youth Forum). Rotary International boasts of huge following in its Youth Clubs namely Rotaract Clubs, Interact Clubs, Youth Exchange, RYLA (Rotary Youth Leadership Award) and Rotary Alumni. This family of Rotary constitute nearly a million worldwide.

It is important to note that Rotary, which is the oldest and arguably the largest service organisation in the world is made up of mostly business leaders, community leaders, professionals and generally service minded people who give freely of their time, talents and resources for the betterment of humanity through some 32 000 clubs world over.

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